Christie: Charleston shooting steeped in hate, racism

 New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, center at podium, addresses a gathering for a service at St. Matthew African Methodist Episcopal Church Sunday, June 21, 2015, in Orange, N.J. The service offered prayers and thoughts of the nine people who were killed at Emmanuel AME Church in Charleston, SC, last Wednesday. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, center at podium, addresses a gathering for a service at St. Matthew African Methodist Episcopal Church Sunday, June 21, 2015, in Orange, N.J. The service offered prayers and thoughts of the nine people who were killed at Emmanuel AME Church in Charleston, SC, last Wednesday. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)

Gov. Chris Christie has told a packed church of worshippers at St. Matthew African Methodist Episcopal that last week’s shooting in Charleston, South Carolina, was steeped in racism and hate.

NJ.com reports that Christie spoke at the church on Sunday evening during a prayer vigil for Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston where authorities say 21-year-old white man Dylann Roof opened fire Wednesday during a bible study, killing nine black church members.

Christie said he’s been praying for the families who lost loved ones and that Roof’s hate comes from “an awful place,” one “born of racism.”

The names of the nine killed were on placards next to candles that were lit as speakers praised at the lectern. Sharonda Coleman-Singleton, who was from Newark, is among the dead.

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